Birdfeed Features

  • Manage multiple accounts.
  • Post images from your choice of service (yfrog, TwitPic, or Posterous).
  • Search Twitter (including support for saved searches, trends, and hashtag lookup, and nearby search).
  • Post shortened URLs using Bit.ly and Tr.im integration.
  • Post URLs from Safari using Birdfeed's bookmarklet support.
  • Save posted links for later reading using Instapaper integration.
  • Re-post tweets using your choice of "retweet" style (quote, RT, or via).
  • Load older tweets using infinite scrolling.
  • Navigate reply chains.
  • Find out more about other users using integration with third-party Twitter services such as Favrd, FollowCost and Overlapr.
  • Log in using a secure connection.
  • Forward tweets or links using the in-app Mail sheet (iPhone OS 3.0 only).

The Birdfeed URL Scheme

Birdfeed 1.1 was approved by Apple yesterday, which means a tour of what’s new is in order. First off, I’d like to talk a bit about what is, to me, one of the most interesting features of 1.1: the new x-birdfeed:// URL scheme.

For most users, the URL scheme will be of interest primarily because of two other features it makes possible: a bookmarklet for posting shortened links from Safari using Birdfeed, and integration between Birdfeed and third-party push notification apps like Boxcar and Tweet Push.

More technically minded users may be interested to know, however, that Birdfeed’s URL scheme goes far beyond what most similar apps offer, and could, in some ways, be thought of as an interapplication API for the app. Here are some examples of things it can do (full documentation forthcoming):

  • Open in Main Timeline:
    x-birdfeed://timeline
  • Open in Mentions:
    x-birdfeed://timeline?view=mentions
  • Open in Direct Messages for a specific account:
    x-birdfeed://messages?account=buzz
  • Open profile by username:
    x-birdfeed://user?screen_name=buzz
  • Open tweet by ID:
    x-birdfeed://status?id=2814526203
  • Do a search:
    x-birdfeed://search?query=buzz%20andersen
  • Do a post with URL from a specific account:
    x-birdfeed://post?text=Birdfeed%20&url=http%3A%2F%2Fbirdfeedapp.com&account=buzz

Some of the applications of this are obvious: for example, a third-party Twitter push app could use the URL scheme to open Birdfeed in either Messages or Mentions depending on the kind of update. I suspect that there are lots of other interesting uses for it in third party apps and bookmarklets, but I’ll leave that as an exercise to the reader.

Posted by buzz on August 27, 2009